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Hormones and Animal Social Behavior:

Hormones and Animal Social Behavior:

Copyright Date: 2005
Pages: 432
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  • Book Info
    Hormones and Animal Social Behavior:
    Book Description:

    Research into the lives of animals in their natural environments has revealed a rich tapestry of complex social relationships and previously unsuspected social and mating systems. The evolution of this behavior is increasingly well understood. At the same time, laboratory scientists have made significant discoveries about how steroid and peptide hormones act on the nervous system to shape behavior. An exciting and rapidly progressing hybrid zone has developed in which these two fields are integrated, providing a fuller understanding of social behavior and the adaptive functions of hormones.

    This book is a guide to these fascinating connections between animal social behavior and steroid and peptide hormones--a synthesis designed to make it easier for graduate students and researchers to appreciate the excitement, engage in such integrative thinking, and understand the primary literature. Throughout, Elizabeth Adkins-Regan emphasizes concepts and principles, hypothesis testing, and critical thinking. She raises unanswered questions, providing an unparalleled source of ideas for future research. The chapter sequence is by levels of biological organization, beginning with the behavior and hormones of individuals, proceeding to social relationships and systems, and from there to development, behavioral evolution over relatively short time scales, life histories and their evolution, and finally evolution over longer time scales. The book features studies of a wide variety of wild and domestic vertebrates along with some of the most important invertebrate discoveries.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-5077-8
    Subjects: Zoology, Biological Sciences, Psychology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-viii)
  3. List of Illustrations and Tables
    (pp. ix-xii)
  4. Preface
    (pp. xiii-xviii)
  5. 1 Hormonal Mechanisms
    (pp. 1-33)

    Social behavior has been linked to many hormones. The best established connections are to steroid hormones, pituitary prolactin, and a few peptide neurohormones (table 1.1). What are these hormones that have been shown to be important for social behavior? How do they work? How are they regulated by the physical environment and the social world? This chapter presents some essential facts and concepts that will inform the rest of the book. It also shares exciting discoveries and new ideas with major implications for behavior.

    Hormonal mechanisms, like everything else about organisms, are a fascinating mixture of old and new. Modern...

  6. 2 Mating, Fighting, Parenting, and Signaling
    (pp. 34-91)

    Behavior such as mating and parenting has fairly obvious fitness consequences but those consequences are not always so obvious for other social behaviors. Nor is it obvious when mating or parenting are done in bizarre ways, for example, by forced copulation that causes injury or by eating the babies. Animal behaviorists have made great progress understanding the functions of many social behaviors, thanks to research that tests hypotheses about whether and how they promote reproductive success. This chapter examines how the steroid and peptide mechanisms of chapter 1 contribute to adaptive social behaviors and whether they impose costs or set...

  7. 3 Social Relationships and Social Organization
    (pp. 92-130)

    When multiple individuals are observed, patterns of social behavior emerge into view. The species typical social behavioral repertoire is not directed evenly or randomly toward conspecifics. Instead, biases toward or away from others reflect social relationships that vary as a function of age, sex, time, and place. The overall configuration of these relationships, or social organization, is to some extent species typical and, like other features of animal life, highly diverse. For beavers, defense of a pond-sized territory by a male and female pair is as characteristic as a flat tail and large gnawing incisors, whereas for baboons, group living...

  8. 4 Development of Sexes and Types
    (pp. 131-178)

    Social behavior can be sexually dimorphic as a result of natural or sexual selection. This chapter examines how these sex differences develop, that is, how dimorphic adult behavioral phenotypes are created during ontogeny. Steroids are central to understanding this process of sexual differentiation. Important themes include the distinction between organizational and activational effects of hormones and between gonad directed and brain directed differentiation. These concepts are then applied to the fascinating phenomena of adult sex change and discrete behavioral types of the same gonadal sex.

    Most vertebrates and many invertebrates come in two sexes that often differ behaviorally as well...

  9. 5 Evolutionary Change and Species Differences
    (pp. 179-223)

    In previous chapters the relationships between steroids and social behavior have been treated in a largely static manner, as if species are discrete categories eternally frozen in time with no history prior to their own ontogenies. This chapter brings into the picture the evolution of phenotypes over relatively short timescales, as in speciation or population divergence. Large-scale evolution (comparisons of entire lineages to understand divergence and convergence) will be taken up in chapter 7.

    Several questions are addressed: How does evolutionary change occur in hormones and in hormone-based behavior? How do different kinds and degrees of sexual dimorphism in behavior...

  10. 6 Life Stages and Life Histories
    (pp. 224-255)

    Mice live fast and die young, producing large litters in rapid succession if they survive at all. Elephants live slow and die old, producing a single offspring at long intervals. A male anglerfish (Borophryne) spends his entire adult life attached parasite-style to a female whose size dwarfs his, and neither sex reaches reproductive maturity until it finds the other, a bizarre but reproductively effective arrangement. These are just a few of the many ways in which species differ in their life histories, passing through different life stages over different timescales. Figuring out how and why diverse life histories are adaptive...

  11. 7 Phylogeny: Conservation and Innovation
    (pp. 256-284)

    Tinbergen’s fourth aim and approach for understanding behavior was phylogenetic history. Since his time, enormous advances have been made in phylogenetic methods for analyzing and interpreting both organismal and molecular (genomic) characters. “Trees of life” in the form of cladograms based on shared derived organismal and molecular characters are being constructed that constitute more objective and testable hypotheses about the actual history of life on earth than ever before. Previous chapters have acknowledged the importance of a phylogenetic context for interpreting differences among related species that have arisen over relatively short time scales. Here the camera will zoom out to...

  12. Afterword
    (pp. 285-286)

    The Preface explained that the goal of this book is to encourage crossing the bridge between behavioral endocrinology, on one side, and behavioral ecology (and other versions of animal behavior), on the other side. The hope was that by using the book as a road map, the traveler can reach a more informed and conceptually elevated vantage point, one providing integrated views of whole forests and not just single trees. As in any science, a good view also reveals the gullies and canyons where lie the hypotheses that failed their tests, and reveals the saplings of those not yet adequately...

  13. References
    (pp. 287-364)
  14. Index
    (pp. 365-411)